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Early retirement scheme (RVU)

This information is provided by:Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVONetherlands Enterprise Agency, RVONederlandse versie

If you employ staff, you can arrange for your employees to retire before state pension age. Such arrangements can also be made in some sectors for specific groups of workers. For instance because they perform heavy work. This is an Early Retirement Scheme (Regeling voor Vervroegde Uittreding, RVU).

An RVU serves as a financial bridging measure until state pension age. If you offer an employee this option, you need to be aware that it is taxed with a pseudo final levy of 52%. This is called the RVU levy.

Employers can make individual arrangements for early retirement with older employees. Employer and an employee organisations also have the option to make agreements at collective agreement level for groups of workers in specific sectors or industries.

The Dutch Tax and Cutsoms Adminstration offers Dutch-language guidelines that explain what an RVU is.

Temporary relaxation of RVU levy

From 1 January 2021 until 31 December 2025 an exemption applies. You will not need to pay the 52% levy (pseudo final levy) if you arrange an RVU with your employee, up to the net amount that matches the amount of the general old age pension (AOW). If you exceed this exemption threshold, this part will be taxed with the 52% levy. You can only make use of this exemption if the RVU fulfils the conditions.

Conditions for the RVU levy exemption

Several conditions apply:

  • The employee does not stop working earlier than 3 years before their state pension (AOW) age.
  • The RVU benefit amounts to no more than the threshold amount (for 2024 this is €2,182 per month for at most 36 months).
  • You arrange an RVU no later than 31 December 2025 with an employee who reaches state pension age no later than 31 December 2028.

The extension period for the temporary relaxation of the RVU levy applies from 1 January 2026 to 31 December 2028.

How to apply?

You apply the RVU and the RVU levy exemption in the wages declaration. You can find the exact rules in the Dutch-language Payroll Taxes Handbook (Handboek Loonheffingen). The income code (inkomenscode) for the RVU is code 53.

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